So today was a very good day, worthy of a celebration! Today at work I received a promotion to "senior director" and I know that might not mean that much to those outside my profession, but to me it means a lot! So to celebrate, I decided to open up a really good bottle of wine tonight, and the one I picked was the 2005 E. Guigal Châteauneuf-du-Pape!
As many of you know, the Châteauneuf-du-Pape is at or near the top of the food chain (I would say at) for Rhône wines of southern France, and is typically a blend of Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre (GSM). Now this particular vintage from E. Guigal is a blend of 85% Grenache, 5% Syrah, 5% Mourvèdre and 5% other grapes.
The color of this wine is a bright ruby in the glass. The nose presents a wonderful of blackberry, spice, black pepper and licorice. The taste is wonderfully fruit forward, with flavors of ripe plum, rich red berries coupled with lovely spices that give way to a taste of smoky grilled herbs, chocolate and earth midpalate. The lovely rounded tannins provide for a well structured, long, floral finish that just reminds me of the time I spent in France.
This is an absolutely lovely bottle that I could easily sip for days, though I have serious doubts it would last that long! Overall I would rate this one a solid 9, no question one of the nicest examples of a Châteauneuf-du-Pape that Ive had the pleasure to enjoy. It would pair wonderfully with a variety of grilled meats, and particularly well with a rare beef tenderloin, or perhaps a lovely choucroute as I recall some of the more memorable dinners from my time in Paris! But really, why would you let a full meal detract from this wine? Just enjoy it with a few olives and a bit of cheese and what more could you ask?